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356 BOOK REVIEWS 

temper of the stage-driver to the large size of the windows in the 
hospitals — both of which, he declared, would be exceptional in a 
land of despotism. To liberty and equality was due the longevity 
of the people. To the absence of entire liberty and equality, in 
the case of women, was due the greater prevalence of consumption 
among their sex." There is an excellent appendix of selected 
letters and other documents, a full bibliography and a complete 
Index at the back of this volume. The work casts great credit 
on Vassar and is a model biography in every way. 



The Mexican Problem. By Clarence W. Barron, with Introduction 
by Talcott Williams, LL.D. Boston and New York: Houghton 
Mifflin Co., 1917. Pp. xxv+136. 

So high an authority on international affairs as Dr. Talcott 
Williams considers these articles on the Mexican Problem, by one 
of America's best known financial experts as "a clear and wise 
economic picture of Mexico," beyond any others that he has read. 
No other book, he claims, " so grasps the clear, strong fact that 
Mexico is a hell on earth because Mexico has no law." It is a 
vivid picture Mr. Barron gives of Mexico in its dark tragic present, 
" with cartridges for currency," and as one falls under the sway of 
his graphic descriptions, it is hard to resist Dr. William's conclu- 
sion that the Mexican people should be given the same chance 
which was given to the people of Cuba. 

There has always been a close connection between New 
England and Mexico. Fifty years ago the people of New England 
were giving lavishly to Protestant missionaries who had returned 
from Mexico to collect money, in order that they might "help 
spread truth and light before our fellow-man and brother over our 
southern border." Forty years ago came the appeal for rail- 
roads, and millions of New England dollars were poured into the 
project, which was not unlinked with religious "futures." There 
are seventeen million people in Mexico — ten million pure Aztecs, 
five million of partially Spanish origin, and two million pure 
Spanish and other foreigners. Where formerly it was estimated 
that there were fifty thousand Americans, there are not now five 
thousand. It is this motley of population which is the most 
difficult of all Mexico's problems, and the question of amalgama- 
tion appeals to many, particularly to the American east of the 



BOOK REVIEWS 357 

Hudson, as one that can only be settled by conquest. New 
England settled its Indian problem in the old days by such a 
means, and it is not unfrequently heard nowadays that the 
United States failed to realize its heaven-sent chance of "conquer- 
ing" Mexico in '48. Back of the idea of "conquering" Mexico — 
an idea, even though it comes from New England, that is quite 
Prussian in essence — is the desire of exploitation, and Mr. Barron 
has settled that possibility to his own mind once and for all. 
" The idea that Mexico is a land to be exploited by foreign princes 
passed away with Maximilian. The idea that it is to be exploited 
for the benefit of the United States must soon go by the boards, if 
it has not already gone." Mr. Barron holds that the redemption 
of Mexico must come from the "invasion of business," but busi- 
ness which has for its end the amelioration of the situation through 
technical training, higher wages, bank accounts, financial inde- 
pendence, and the rights of citizenship and accumulation. Much 
of his book centers around the story of one of these "invaders" — 
Mr. Edward L. Doheny, who, with his partner Canfield, entered 
Mexico in 1900 to prospect for petroleum, and about whom Mr. 
Barron has written an interesting chapter. In proof of his asser- 
tion that exploitation is not the cure for Mexico, Mr. Barron says 
that cooperation between Mexico and its Sister Republic of the 
North can never be accomplished until two popular, yet abso- 
lutely false, impressions of Mexico are removed. These popular 
fallacies are: 

"First, that the natural wealth of Mexico has furnished a base 
for contending business interests from the United States to pro- 
mote Mexican quarrels. 

"Second, that the land question is at the bottom of the Mexican 
troubles." 

With these two fallacies as a background, Mr. Barron points 
out that every policy begun by the United States during Mr. Wil- 
son's presidency has been wrong. The President's attitude of 
non-intervention rendered the national government in Mexico 
powerless. "Wilson's words were posted over Mexico. It was 
'open season' for all who could get the guns." Mr. Barron's 
book is written from Wall Street, and, while hardly worthy of the 
adjective historical, his book gives a new viewpoint to the Mexican 
Problem. It is oil, not religion, which he places at the root of the 
trouble.